Sutra Studies Week 17: Speeds Of Travel Towards Samadhi (Sutras 21-23)

“To the keen and intent practitioner this [samadhi] comes very quickly. (Sutra 21)

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The time necessary for success further depends on whether the practice is mild, medium or intense. (Sutra 22)

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Or [samadhi is attainted] by devotion with total dedication to Isvara [Supreme Purusa/pure self/pure consciousness/the I Am/the original unchanging and unafflicted source of all things]. (Sutra 23)”

The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali

Tivrasamveganamasannah (Sutra 21)

Tivra: keen interest | Samveganam: with great speed | Asannah: sitting very close


Mrdu Madhyadhimatratvat Tato’pi Visesah (Sutra 22)

Mrdu: mild | Madhya: medium | Adhmatratvat: from full, intense | Tatah (tato): Thereupon | Api (‘pi): also | Visesah: differentiation, distinction


Isvarapranidhanadva (Sutra 23)

Isvara: Supreme Unchanging Purusa | Pranidhanat: from dedicated devotion | Va: or


Samadhi, according to Patanjali, can come very quickly, or at a slow(er) pace over the span of a lifetime depending on the individual Yoga practitioner and the effort/energy that he/she devotes to their practice and to their connection with their true self/highest self-expression.

The state of consciousness can therefore take, by these recommendations, anywhere from the blink of an eye to a couple of months or years, or an entire lifetime, depending on the individual who attains the state and where he/she is internally, and in relation to, their devotion, determination, and dedication to realizing their true self.

Most people will attain the state through diligent and conscious effort over some span of time, but many others will attain Samadhi (even in some cases without intending to do so because they were not even aware that they were practicing Yoga when employing an integrated lifestyle choice/state of being) spontaneously and instantaneously through total dedication, trust, and surrender to the highest power in existence. All timeframes are unique to the individual.

The more diligent and devoted one’s practice is, the more quickly results will come.

Continue to apply effort to your Yama, Niyama, Asana, Pranayama, Pratyahara, Dharana, And Dhyana practice each day, and, once in a while (if you have not yet reached Samadhi), make an assessment of what areas may need improvement in your life in order to effectively prepare yourself to attain your goal and maintain it with consistency once it is obtained.


Remember that your determination, focus, dedication, and the quality of your efforts (never doing anything for mere ritual alone but for its significance and impact on your being) can be your express tickets to the peace and liberation that you seek. So, this week, please pause for a moment to make an assessment of where you are on your Eightfold Path.

Ask Yourself: How quickly do I wish to get to Samadhi? What more do I need to do/be in my practice in order to get to this state based on what I know so far?

Once you have an answer, and a plan, the only thing left to do is to implement your understanding and strategy!

Trust, if you are on this path or one guided by or similar to it, that you will attain your goal of reaching Samadhi, because you will…if you continue with your efforts and take the right steps.

This is the most important lesson that the Yoga Sutras teach all Yoga practitioners, and is something that you are best served always remembering as you continue with your journey and your practice: liberation and self-realization is attainable for all beings who seek it in their lifetime. This liberation only costs your time and effort/energy, or your devotion, and it is entirely led and determined by you.

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